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UN Chief Condemns Hatred on Holocaust Remembrance Day

  • VOA News

A Holocaust survivor places a lit candle at the Monument of the Victims during ceremonies to mark the 69th anniversary of the liberation of the Auschwitz Nazi death camp's in Oswiecim, Poland, Jan. 27, 2014.
United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon is calling for unflagging vigilance against bigotry, extremism, and discrimination as the U.N. marked Holocaust Remembrance Day.

Ban recalled his visit to Auschwitz - the Nazi death camp in Poland liberated by Soviet forces 69 years ago Monday. He remembered seeing what he calls the "horrific remnants of the machinery of genocide," and scenes of daily life of Eastern European Jews wiped out by the Nazis.

U.N. Human Rights chief Navi Pillay said all Holocaust deniers and anti-Semites should visit Auschwitz and have what she described as a "harrowing and humbling" experience.

At the White House, President Barack Obama said bigotry and hatred in all forms must be confronted. He reaffirmed the U.S. commitment to not just bear witness, but to act.

Historians say the Nazis murdered 6 million Jews and others, including Roma, homosexuals, the handicapped and opponents of the Hitler regime during World War II.